At six-foot tall, Sabrina Frederick is tenacious, tough and one of the fiercest competitors in the game.
She’s a fighter.
To those watching from the sidelines, it might come as a surprise that the Richmond forward and two-time All-Australian is fuelled by a strictly vegan diet.
And it’s one of the reasons she keeps getting better, Frederick tells womens.afl.
“A vegan diet and high performance I think works really well.”
“Making the change has not only made me feel less cloudy but has helped with keeping my diet more disciplined and thought out.
“I feel like I have more energy and I am more focused.”
The 23-year-old has been playing at the elite level since she captained the Australian youth girls team in 2013, but nutrition hasn’t always been a focus.
With access to a club dietitian through the AFLW, Frederick has become more aware of how to fuel her body to perform at her best.
“I think the key is making sure you get all the right nutrients for your body,” she says.
“Making sure you are disciplined in getting enough carbohydrate, protein and fat for the recovery your body needs is vital.”
Frederick combines plant-based proteins with vegetables and healthy carbohydrates.
She chooses meals that are quick to prepare and will help her body to recover after training and prepare for a game, like roasted baby broccoli rigatoni or a tofu scramble.
“My go-to meals would be a jackfruit and tofu burrito bowl, a mushroom and tofu scramble with avocado on toast or a pasta dish with a heap of vegetables,” she says.
The focus on her nutrition, as well as following a vegan lifestyle, has evolved since she joined Brisbane for the inaugural AFLW season in 2017, and then relocating to Melbourne in 2019.
“I would say overall my meals are way more healthy, in terms of having what I need for my body in each meal as a priority,” she says.
“I didn’t like mushrooms a hell of a lot, but now my taste buds have changed and I pretty much have them every day.
“I also have kale every day now which I never really used to, and I love it!”
Her newfound Melbourne lifestyle has also had an effect.
“A big change I have made since the move is having a smoothie for breakfast,” Frederick says.
“I find it works really well for me and it’s easy to get a lot of nutrients you need in a smoothie first up.”
Sabrina’s Roasted Baby Broccoli Rigatoni
Fuel like self-proclaimed ‘garden gangster’ Sabrina with this quick and nutritious vegan recipe.